Cisco To Acquire Viptela For $610M As It Looks To Take A Major Stake In SD-WAN
Joseph F. Kovar
Cisco on Monday said it plans to acquire Viptela, a developer of software-defined, wide area networking (SD-WAN) technology, for $610 million in cash and assumed equity awards.
With the acquisition, Cisco is looking to place its stake in the cloud-based SD-WAN technology. The acquisition is slated to close in the second half of 2017.
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Viptela provides SD-WAN technology to several Fortune 500 companies and carriers like Verizon. Its offerings include the vSmart Cloud-based SDN-WAN Controller to centrally manage routing, policy, security, segmentation and authentication of devices; vManage Network Management System for centralized configuration and management; and vEdge routers.
Once acquired, Viptela would be the third SD-WAN technology offered by Cisco. Cisco IWAN is an on-premises SD-WAN technology, and Cisco Meraki is a cloud-based SD-WAN offering with unified threat management capabilities. Cisco acquired Meraki in 2012.
Rob Salvagno, vice president of corporate business development at Cisco, wrote in a blog post on Monday that Viptela offers a cloud-first approach to SD-WAN with cloud orchestration and branch network management as well as overlay technologies.
Salvagno wrote: "With Viptela, Cisco can offer customers more choice in their enterprise branch offices and WAN deployments, with a compelling SD-WAN solution that is easy to deploy and simple to manage."
"Together, Cisco and Viptela will be able to deliver next generation SD-WAN solutions to best serve all size and scale of customer needs, while accelerating Cisco’s transition to a recurring, software-based business model," Salvagno wrote.
Cisco said it expects to combine Viptela's cloud-first capabilities with Cisco's SD-WAN capabilities to accelerate the move to next-generation SD-WAN offerings.
The acquisition is a move that Cisco really needs to do, said a solution provider that works closely with both Cisco and Viptela.
The solution provider, who preferred to remain anonymous, told CRN that Viptela provides Cisco a quick score in the SD-WAN game.
There are at least 23 vendors in the SD-WAN market, and the one that is in most competitive situations is Viptela, the solution provider said.
"It's great to see Cisco recognize the move to SD-WAN," the solution provider said. "This is the tipping point for customers moving to SD-WAN. Viptela was ready to take a big part of the market held by Cisco. Cisco was late to the game and can compete in SD-WAN now. But while it is catching up, Viptela has been moving forward."
Viptela brings to Cisco a solution rooted in simplicity, which is key as customers look to deploy at scale while cutting back on operating costs, the solution provider said.
"Today, SD-WAN is not always a Cisco-first conversation," the solution provider said. "This acquisition is a big move for Cisco."